My Mazamet

Life at № 42

Beautiful Things: Roland Oudot and Mercier Freres

Roland Oudot and Mercier Frères. Two names that aren’t terribly well known although they should be. A few weeks ago I saw a painting by Oudot at auction and thought it was just fabulous. The sort of picture that makes you smile when you walk by.

Roland Oudot (1897-1981), La plage à Trouville

It sold for €5625 at Christie’s (France). He was born in Paris in 1897. By 1915 he was the assistant of Léon Bakst who did the costumes and painted stage decorations for the Ballet Russes. His very interesting bio is available in French here. He’s one of those artists with a large range of prices – but as one would expect the better pieces do go for the Christie’s range and even a bit higher.

Mercier Frères was an interiors shop in the best French tradition. Furniture, antiques, objects, wallpaper, fabric, everything and of the finest quality. They opened in 1828 at 100 Faubourg Saint-Antoine and soon counted among their clients some of the most prominent figures of the times. Their success was such that apart from Nice, Lille and even Bucharest, they opened shops in Manhattan and Buenos Aires. Here are some amusing pictures of their work.

They made rather exquisite furniture which on the rare occasion goes onto the market. Looking through auction house archives I found this pair of benches which would look good in many homes. They sold in London for just under £3000. Below them is a secretaire that is also lovely.

In one of those miraculous cases, the company survived all the turmoil of European wars and stayed open until 1985. A number of gorgeous pieces are available at 1stDibs. One of the standout pieces is this Louis XVI Chest

 

 

 

 

 

 

16 comments on “Beautiful Things: Roland Oudot and Mercier Freres

  1. Steve Ruis
    July 24, 2020

    Damn, I have a checkbook, just not enough funds in the bank to cover any of these. :o) Plus all I have are dollars, I don’t have any of those Euros! :o)

    I love your posts of what you find lovely. Please keep sharing.

    Liked by 2 people

  2. Diana MacPherson
    July 24, 2020

    I love one of the art deco cabinets (I love art deco) on the 1st Dibs site….because just look at the feet on this https://www.1stdibs.com/furniture/storage-case-pieces/cabinets/art-deco-oak-cabinet/id-f_19017952/

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Pink Agendist
      July 24, 2020

      I love art deco too! In fact that was the first style Mike and I agreed on when we began living together.
      Those feet are extraordinary. I’ve never seen anything like them on an art deco piece. They could be straight out of the Spanish Baroque period.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. clubschadenfreude
    July 24, 2020

    that secretaire, are those images painted?

    I very much want that apartment in the third picture. I’m assuming that is 30s?

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Helen Devries
    July 24, 2020

    Did his 1941 trip contribute to his relative obscurity?
    You are right, that pcture makes you smile automatically.

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Pink Agendist
      July 24, 2020

      Almost certainly! The post-war was brutal to anyone with even the slightest whiff of being a sympathiser.

      Like

    • The Pink Agendist
      July 24, 2020

      It’s not a culture that lets go of the past easily. Mike often says that even the revolution is just under the skin here for many people — both the ones who think it shouldn’t have happened and the others who think it didn’t go far enough.

      Liked by 1 person

      • Helen Devries
        July 24, 2020

        Very true! An elderly friend – well a lot older than I was then – was a Republican godmother to a number of children in her family circle where anti clericalism was still a live issue and we knew any number of retired ‘black hussars’ – the strongly Republican teachers of the secular public school system.

        Liked by 1 person

  5. acflory
    July 25, 2020

    If I had the money I’d be into the warriors and lacquer ware as well. Sadly I’m still waiting for my pot of gold. Can’t imagine why it’s taking so long. 😉

    Liked by 1 person

    • The Pink Agendist
      July 26, 2020

      Antiques and art are particularly expensive in Australia, aren’t they? In the past I’ve sold to dealers who took container loads of things from Europe which they’d then mark up by an almost obscene percentage.

      Liked by 1 person

      • acflory
        July 26, 2020

        Sadly, yes. The only antiques I’ve got are the ones my Mum bought back in the 60’s when everyone else was into vinyl and chrome. I guess it’s that whole ‘tyranny of distance’ thing.

        Liked by 1 person

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This entry was posted on July 24, 2020 by in art, design, Mazamet and tagged , , , , , , .
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